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Atom Bomb [Joe Bonica's Movie of the Month]

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Atom Bomb [Joe Bonica's Movie of the Month]

Published ca. 1955

Early atomic weapons testing.

Run time 7:26
Producer Bonica (Joe)
Sponsor N/A
Audio/Visual Sd, B&W


"Survival Town" Atom Test, operation "Teapot"
Atomic Test, amazing films of H-Bomb
Actual footage of nuclear bomb testing, the scientists and military people involved in a the South Pacific and the American Southwest. Frighteningly slim and few precautions are taken with the lives of those people who jobs were to be present at the test sites. Film purports to prove that survival of nuclear attack is possible.

Bikini Atoll; testing of the atomic bomb; Navy crews watch from deck of ship;

remote control Los Alamos director Dr. Holloway;

crew straps on goggles; bomb explodes;

aerial shot shows ships immediately adjacent to the mushroom cloud;

Mercury, Nevada test; some tanks were less than a mile away;
scene of utter devastation and annihilation

Operation Teapot Yucca Flat Nevada;

9000 servicemen ready to take their places in trenches;
soldiers dust each other off with brooms;

"Demonstrating the importance of civil defense preparedness, the elaborate exercises proved survival is possible, offering new hope to all who live in the shadow of the atomic age."



Reviewer: Timesten - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 6, 2013
Subject: On the bomb and 911`
Reviewer: MannM - favoritefavoritefavorite - January 23, 2013
Subject: Reply to "Apeism is Stupid"
Please, go to vent your religiousness someplace else. This is about reality not your prejudices.
Practice before you preach...
Reviewer: Vlax - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 19, 2012
Subject: insane
this is a great example of an insane propaganda
Reviewer: hingerty - favoritefavoritefavorite - March 17, 2011
Subject: Old Man was there
My Dad was there at Eniwietok. In MIlINtel. He was personnel officer for the guys stationed there. He died from cancer...wonder to the Nazis enslaving...its odd that they didnt force the French to speak German..or the Brits on the channel islands. The Germans can hardly be judged by the war in the east. It was brutal on both sides. The Russkis took no prisoners in many cases. Even Patton said.."we killed the wrong pig" Then he died under strange circumstances. To say the least.
Reviewer: Apeism is Stupid - - December 23, 2010
Subject: chales...
You're hatred towards Christianity and misinformation about Christianity probably comes from you being apart of some fringe, radical Muslim group, or atheist/anti-theist group. I don't know. I can only guess your reasons. But, you're a deceiver, AND/OR you know NOTHING about Christianity.

May God have mercy on your soul, so you won't end up living (if it can be called,"living") with Satan, and everyone who follows him, when these End Times are done.

Bombs like these, are the worst inventions by mankind. The Antichrist is coming soon, and bombs like these, may be used at that time. BUT Jesus, the King of kings and Lord of lords, will return, and He will put an end to all the madness...

"For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be.

And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect's sake those days will be shortened...

...For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.

For wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together.

Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.

Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other."- Matthew 24:21-22,27-31

"Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming."
-Matthew 25:13

May God soften the hardened hearts.
Merry Christmas to all...
Reviewer: Ron Raygun - favoritefavoritefavorite - December 30, 2009
Subject: Big Government Bombs
In 1955 when the films were made, the U.S. Government was starting to grow out of control. Military out of control spending started and it fed on itself. A strong defense is necessary, but has to be constantly monitored, such that it doesn't go to a Commander in Chief's head. Fifty years after these films were made tells the incremental war madness, which will continue until the American's take their country back from AIPAC, Israel, and the Military Industrial Complex.
Reviewer: enola - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 29, 2009
Subject: Inevitable
Interesting comments, some from people completely ignorant of historical facts. For instance, Japan had the bomb. What if they had also had the time to finish developing it, and shared the know-how with Germany? I doubt that any languages but German and Japanese would be spoken today. We won't even bother to discuss the ethnic *cleansing* that would have occurred across the globe by both the Nazis and Japan's warrior class.

Ever since the invention of the wheel, the discovery and use of nuclear power has been inevitable. With Man's predilection for self-destruction, the questions were only who would get it first and what would it be used for?

To be sure, the United States has promulgated its share of evil in the world, but the "Blame America First" and "Hate the Bushies" crowds are becoming quite tedious. Please do something about your own country's contributions before wagging self-righteous fingers at the "evil USA".

Post WWII, the United States did not enslave the world or commit global genocide as the Nazis would have. Were proper safety precautions taken by the US during testing, and did our scientists fully understand the implications of radiation? No - the science was new and we simply did not have enough data.

As residents of this planet, we know far more now, and I doubt any sane people would choose to re-visit nuclear holocaust on any culture - but therein lies the problem. Sanity is in short supply these days, and any fringe group with the technical expertise can and probably will attack individuals or perhaps the entire globe with nuclear, chemical, or biological WMDs.

Again, I think this is inevitable - unless we somehow learn to live with each other.
Reviewer: NoiseCollector - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 16, 2009
Subject: Great footage
I can't wait to see something like that in person. It's the only way to go if you ask me. A beautifual skyline and then nothing, perfect!
Reviewer: Lamden - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 27, 2008
Subject: Atom Bomb
Atom Bomb
Reviewer: bestpbx - - June 27, 2008
Subject: Chales
You know NOTHING about Christianity. Your entire post makes you looks silly.
Reviewer: chales - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 22, 2008
Subject: human sacrifice
the atom bomb and war is the way christians offer human sacrifice to there god satan. in the begining god created the heavens and the earth and man. god gave man dominion over the earth. man sined and gave satan domination over the earth and man. god inorder to set man free put his child into a human body to offer a human sacrifice to satan and a human blood drink offering. do not be suprised that the christians are always at war and building weapions of mass destruction. this is how christians offer human sacrifice to there god satan(jesus). christians are saved by the shedding of blood. they can only get into heaven if they have a bucket of blood for a drink offering.
Reviewer: Steve jarvis - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 28, 2007
Subject: Nuclear War
Speaking to a man once involved in 'civil defence' in Britain I learned that the expectation was 80% of the population would die in a not unlikley 200 megaton attack on te UK during the cold war. He said there was no question of burying the dead. Large population areas would be buldozed flat when possible. The 'policy' objective would be to preserve the gene pool. Everyone over 21 who survived was expandable and would work at what ever was required until they dropped, the aim being to keep the younger people alive. All a rather stark contrst to the 'Survival Town' section.
In a way these films are a testament to the lack of understanding about what nuclear war across the globe would really mean at the time it was made. Or at least it refelcts the lack of understanding of the civilian population. At the same time though the sheer imensity of the detonations inthe images maight help younger people today understand what could have happend and indeed what cold still happen. After all from now until the end of humanity is anywone really sure these things won't be used and hundreads or even thousands of millions of people killed with so little purpose.
Somtimes peace can be an uncomfortable one but death,after all, is permanent.
Reviewer: Shortofheaven - - May 19, 2007
Subject: Too Close To Home...
I wasn't even thought of when the testing was taking place, however, I married a man who lost his dad back in 1984. His father was the ripe ol' age of 42. He was one of the youngsters over there in around 1958, coming home in around 1962. He suffered years with sicknesses, ending up in a wheel chair with too many numerous illnesses to mention. Some of my husband's own complications as a child, were perhaps carried on through life from his father. Nothing more to say. The End...
Reviewer: Mr. Schmacke - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 3, 2007
Subject: freedom is save!
just put your sunglass on, nothing will happen!
Reviewer: Schmiggy boy - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - December 10, 2006
Subject: Atom Bomb
I grew up near Hanford and now work in television. I spent four days with Col. Harry Matthias who built the reactors that produced the plutonium for fat man. For historical value, there was great alarm and concern. They also did not know exactly how the bomb would work. One thing that impresses me is that they built the reactors and process buildings and had the first plutonium in 22 months. Unheard of today. Alot of folks suffered because of what the scientists did not know or look at. One time an admiral from the local naval training base asked Matthias what he was doing at this secret place. "We're building the front ends of horses and shipping them back to Washington for final assembly!" Dont blame our folks, it was a pretty scary time then and we took care of business. Cant do that today.
Reviewer: fixed - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 27, 2006
Subject: LA BAMBA ???
Well i'd hate to be a stick in the mud, but this is another and possibly main reason the icecaps are melting. Do you know how much colder air it takes to cool a million degrees or so..? What about the radiation in the air and water..? I'll bet it takes longer to cool water than air ! yet all the (radioactive) water vapor that goes into the air from the blast..I was just wondering!?! How many more do we have to test? No wonder it's been so fucking hot outside!
Reviewer: Mr. Rubber Ducky - favoritefavoritefavorite - July 8, 2006
Subject: It will be hot time in town tonight!
Nuke 'em high, nuke 'em low...

Nuke 'em until they glow, glow, glow!
Reviewer: hudgeliberal - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 29, 2006
Subject: Stupidity-The most dangerous weapon of all
If you believe anything the United States government tells you,then I have some oceanfront property in Ohio that I can sell you real cheap. The propaganda spewed by our government during the 50's and 60's would be funny if it wasnt so disturbing. In the event of all out nuclear war,know this,if you are one of the countrys elite then you will be shuffled away to safety. However if you are an average Joe,you will be left to the wolves. Everything I was told as a child about the history of this country,was flat out lies. Wake up people,in this age of right wing fanatics,you are losing your personal freedoms by the thousands each year. Piece by piece the Bush administration is ripping the Constitution to shreds. Now that he has appointed fanatical right wing lunatics to the supreme court,expect virtually every good law that has been enacted since the 60's to be overturned or rewritten to favor the rich,upper class jerks that have ruined our once-great country. If you make less than 100,000 a year,are a minority,are disabled,or if you simply value your personal rights to privacy,I suggest you do everything in your power to get these lunatics out of office(hopefully in jail where they belong)before it is too late.
Reviewer: The Bean 81 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 27, 2005
Subject: Kids of the future will do it anyway
Pull your head in. The scientists building the atom bomb new way in advance how big it would be. Even before the did the Trinity test. They new that it would completely wipe a whole city, yet they still built it. I am kid of the future and know full well the destruction and would build my own bomb or design whatever is coming next. So would any self respecting kid going into science today (excluding bioligists, biology isn't science it's just observation and analysis, YUK). The benefits of the technology and knowledge gained from the bomb far outweigh the destruction it has caused. It is probably the sole factor preventing world war 3 and anyone who says that shouldn't have built the bomb either is too cracked up to realise this or is willing to embrace another hundred years of war and another world war.
Reviewer: randomc - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 11, 2005
Subject: Humans, huh! Always think they know best...
One of the points they were trying to make was that the Atom Bomb was SAFE to innocent bystanders when used properly. Sadly, they were horribly, horribly wrong. Of course, they also said that about Reaganomics (if you're too young to get that, look it up yourself, I'm busy).

The intials tests (and remember the technology of the time!) indicated that at a certain distance, you would be safe from the bomb's radiation. Instead, many of the people who were there for the making of this film died of radiation related illnesses. During these tests there were "viewing areas" for bigwigs, both military and civilian. Some of them were way too close. Guess what happened to those "viewers"?

A similar thing happened to actors and film crew who worked on a western in what was supposed to be a "safe" area in the Nevada desert near a nuclear testing site in the early 1950's. The mortality rate among those present was quite high.

To read about the impact on the inhabitants of Bikini and other Marshall islands, go to:

But of course, we were the GOOD GUYS - how could it be wrong?

So typical of humans: they create the most devistating force ever, far beyond anything anyone had ever imagined, and thought they could make it their servant, obediant and harmless. Silly mortals.

You bright kids who are going to come up with the next bit of devastating technology take note.
Reviewer: Johann von Schnell - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 22, 2005
Subject: Some are more equal than others
All people are equal- but some are more equal than others (homage to Animal Farm). Knowing the deadly power of the atom bomb, imagine the message that the US would have given if they had dropped the bomb over water in several harbors in Japan instead of on Nagasaki and Hiroshima- Japan would have surrendered just as quickly but perhaps we would not have had the long dark winter of neurotic fear the bomb cast over the 50s and 60s (see Duck and Cover- that's our government protecting us???) If some day the folks in power in DC can REALLY see all people as equal human beings deserving of equal treatment in life, we can drop the pervision of patriotism and bring the world to a new era of true peace without the need for those at the top to live off the economic slavery of the rest of the world.
Reviewer: LocoBonobo - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 1, 2005
Subject: Proud of America
This movie demonstrates the US Governments dedication and wilingness to go to any length to protect the lives of American ciizens by preparing for the worst. We owe a great debt to the Government of the United States of America for putting the safety of the men women and children of this great nation before the physical well being of our own soldiers. I thank God for the sacrifices that were made to protect this country in a time of crisis and uncertainty.
Reviewer: AdministratorAgent - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 21, 2005
Can someone ask the authors of RADIO BIKINI to make their wonderfully sad Documentary available for ARCHIVE.ORG ??
Reviewer: Jah Gussi - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 10, 2005
Subject: gmm

get down
Reviewer: AJ Henderson - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 21, 2005
Subject: An interesting point
Someone mentioned something about the fallout from these tests having an impact on the communities downwind of the blast. An interesting point should be noted that in fact the majority of the damage was actually done much further east than you would expect. In fact, most of the radioactive debree went in to the atmosphere, was blown in clouds to the east coast and then rained down over the east cost a few hundred miles inland. I know that the area in which I live (Albany, NY area) is actually quite radioactive as a result of these tests. While the level of radiation is still quite safe, it is a little unnerving to not be able to get good measures of radioactivity from a 10th grade chemistry experiment using a small piece of uranium ore because the ambient radiation is greater than that of the sample. (Our gieger counter was clicking once or twice a second from ambient radiation.)
Reviewer: Steve Packard - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 27, 2004
Subject: Lets get the facts straight
This is a great movie. Really shows the power of nulcear weapons.

But as for some of the other reviews of this film: Being in the area of a small nuclear explosion (and these were small) is not the healthiest thing in the world, but it's not necessarly super-dangerous either. Most of the radiation from the blast is atenuated to safe levels a few miles away. A greater concern is the fallout, which if inhaled or ingested could colect radioisotopes in the body and cause cancer or other problems. Not eating and wearing breathing masks as well as not staying in the area too long are good preventitive measures.

Most of the radioisotopes are short lived, and it becomes safe to even venture to ground zero for a short period of time within days.

Today the Nevada Test Site and the Paciffic Proving grounds (including bikini atoll) are completely safe to visit, even with strict government standards. They even offer scuba diving at bikini atoll. Hiroshima and Nagasaki were rebuilt. The Chenobel accident in the USSR released over a thousand times more fallout than a nuclear explosion does.

Keep in mind: Edward Teller wittnessed several nuclear blasts and lived to almost 100. Glenn Seaborg saw a few and lived into his 90's. Leslie Groves lived into his 80's. Most of the scientists lived long lives.

As long as proper precautions are taken there is no need for alarm.

For more information on radiation saftey I suggest visiting

Reviewer: Sepultura - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 14, 2004
Subject: This is serious!
Many of these people in the movie became very ill and died becasue of the exposure to radiation! This film graphically depicts the vast unconcern of those in authority for the soldiers, who were obviously regarded as mere tools, unworthy of consideration.

Around the time of the first Gulf War, President Bush 1 was reported to have referred to individual soldiers as "OFUs", meaning "One Fodder Unit". That evil sensibility is very much on display in this movie.
Reviewer: LeeEdgarTyler - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 4, 2004
Subject: Heros and Warrior Revisited
Of course what the film actually demonstrates is the utter disregard our government displayed for its citizen-soldiers in the atomic bomb tests. Having suppressed the information necessary for their consent, our nation lined up hundreds of unsuspecting troops, most of whom were draftees, and deliberately--and unnecessarily--exposed them to potentially lethal doses of radiation. And of course the danger to civilians whose homes were downwind of the blast was also completely ignored, neglected, and covered up. We will never completely know the extent of the damage the US perpetrated upon its own unsuspecting and naive citizens.
Reviewer: WolfPackJudo - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 15, 2004
Subject: Heros and warriors
This movie shows the dedication that many of our service men had and have for their country and their loved ones. Knowing that the atom bomb was a huge threat that must be dealt with our military stood proud to the test. Yes, it's true that they didn't know the full extent of the damage it would do. Now we do. These brave souls helped make all of us safer. Those that think badly about this should remember that we are alive and still speaking English because these men gave. God bless America.
Reviewer: cammers14 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 2, 2003
Subject: Amazing....
This atom bomb movie illustrated just how important it is to keep historical films. It shows the power and strength of technology, as well as the devastation it can cause. It reminded me of reading the book "Hiroshima." It is sad that all these soldiers were exposed to radiation and that Bikini Atoll became basically a waste-land though.
Reviewer: Christine Hennig - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - July 18, 2003
Subject: Atom Bomb
Newsreel clips from the 50s heyday of atmospheric atomic testing. Some of the more famous test are shown here, including the tests at Bikini Atoll and the Nevada tests where houses of various types were nuked. Lots of spectacular blast footage here, as well as footage of soldiers and sailors being exposed to radiation. Wonder how many of them died of cancer later?
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: **. Weirdness: **. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ****.
Reviewer: Spuzz - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 5, 2003
Subject: Boom! Boom! Boom!
Quite possibly the first movie showing the Bikini Atoll Bomb drills, and then mercilessly used in every single atom bomb documentary since, this little nugget is basically a newsreel (several it looks like) detailing the blasts from Bikini Atoll and surrounding areas. You know the footage, Houses made of different materials are built, mannequins are set up, gulliable soldiers are positioned WAY to close to the area of the blast, etc. Then BOOM! The houses are WASTED! The mannquins incenerated! The soldiers slowly die from radiation poisoning! (not shown) The narrator intones "From this blast, we have learned a lot on how to protect ourselves!" Yes, don't build a house made out of balsa wood and expect it there once da bomb hits would be no. 1.
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